It has been an eventful couple days. I had a sister in Christ, from another denomination, which will remain unnamed, call me. The call started on edge but ok, as it sounded like a training call and then denigrated into me catching the sound of my voice rising a few decibels. My thoughts after the call, particularly the way it ended, were of the days of Adam and Noah, as I could imagine the beginning of separation in their days. Then I had a brother I know call me to tell me about dream he had; in the dream he says the Lord said to him, “Where are my people, where are my people, where are my people. I cannot find them. I cannot find my people. The judgement does not start yet, but I cannot find my people. Pass it on because I cannot find my people.”
Interesting words considering what had been on my mind before these calls. It was only after having time to consider my own thoughts before the first call, and the reality of the context, and then the second call making sense, I realized I’d been waffling between writing something like you’re reading now, for about week but closer to two, or not writing because I’m newly recommitted to the Lord a short while and therefore only a toddler in Christ. But the word of God to Jeremiah, “do not say I am only a child” is a real word, and these calls opened me to a troubling but sober reality.
Studying the word of God, the gospel of Jesus Christ has taught me that no denomination gives us life, Jesus does. Going to church didn’t save our lives, Jesus did. Calling ourselves or adopting a denomination as our religion is not salvation, Jesus is. During the days of his gospel Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” What I can bear witness to since coming into the light of life in Jesus, is that there is separation of God’s people by race, by denomination, by political views, by words – everything warned against by the Apostle Paul in his letters to the separate bodies he was commissioned to establish. My mind harkens to the days God, Adam, and Eve endured the first conflict between Cain and Able; to the days of Noah & the Nephilim giants, (Genesis 10:25) the earth had to be divided after the flood due to disagreements between our ancestors and their children. And then Jesus came to create the new man; today pastors and clergy use a language of differences in interpretation; For all of this there is a word; “come out of her my people”.
We were told that the wheat and the weeds were to grow together in the gospel, Matthew 13; 29-30, but like the old days, were the people of God meant to adopt to the ways of the world because of this? Unfortunately the sound of the first call sounded like what we’ve been warned against, putting ego before grace. While the sister may believe what she was selling because her heart is won by that denomination; What would Jesus say? She had gone into her pitch and froze me by asking what I thought about her denomination once I told her I knew who they were; froze because each doctrine belongs to whomever created it. The pitch went further after I explained that, even with me asking if she planned on converting me from Jesus Christ to Jesus Christ and how; instead of holding a short worship session we bickered about religion and the reason her denomination, which shall remain nameless, is the denomination of God. When the conversation was over I felt unsure, I felt stung, I felt discomfort – but faithful and true, the Lord revived my soul with the brother’s call the next day.
As a fellow servant of Christ, I’ve taken to prayer because I didn’t know how to respond properly to the conversation and allowing myself to get upset wouldn’t solve anything. Neither would judging without reason, because I have heard the same veil from more denominations than one, though not claimed so boldly. So it made sense that rather than pointing fingers or name dropping it would be better to write my feelings here for anyone willing to listen, to remind our congregations that our doctrine should not supersede Jesus as the only way to God. Because the Lord is constantly looking to and fro in the world to find his people. The conversation however did give me cause to wonder if what is written in Jeremiah and in the book of Revelation “Come out of her my people”, may be about denominational worship, and whether the denominations we are part of aren’t our Babylon; the confusion in the varying forms of scripture interpretation, and how the interpretations form the doctrines of the denomination. I know it is also written in several places “those who humble themselves will be exalted and those who exalt themselves will be humbled”? Like a body, Christ has many members, as it is written. But if the members work contrary to one another how does that affect the message? Even as an toddler in Christ, I have to ask if love and unity among His people isn’t the delight of the Lord anymore. And we know also that the eyes of the Lord run to and fro in the earth to show himself strong for those who trust in him according to 2 Chronicles 16 verse 9. Maybe it is not a bad idea to pray that the Lord provide the interpretation of scripture and the wisdom and patience we need, to understand the truth. I have been wrong many times, but I already wrote this and overthought it, and now it’s published. In the spirit of love, give me your honest thoughts if you read the whole thing.
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